17265 Marshfield Lane Prior Lake, MN 55372 – Home For Sale

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17265 Marshfield Lane Prior Lake, MN 55372 – Home For Sale

Are you looking for a townhome with all living on one level? A townhome with a huge master suite, a private backyard and close to shopping? If these are some of your criteria you may have found the right home for you. This spacious open floor plan was built in 2002.

The exterior is vinyl and maintenance free. The Association fee is only $190 per month. It covers sanitation, snow and lawn care, outside maintenance, hazard insurance, water and sewer, building exterior and professional management. The location is wonderful your less than five minutes from downtown prior Lake and less than 10 minutes to all the shopping you could want. In addition your only five minutes from 35W which makes getting to downtown Minneapolis less than 30 minutes.

The layout of the unit is very open and it has all living on one level. As you enter the home on the right you see the second bedroom which can be a home office and to the left and eating kitchen with the pantry. That leads to the main level laundry room at the attached two-car garage. Down the hall from the entryway you will find a full bathroom, large dining room, family room with vaulted ceiling and sunroom. The master bedroom is a full master suite complete with a walk-in closet and a full private master bath.

The lower level is completely finished with the third bedroom, third bathroom and tons of storage. The lower level family room is adjacent to a full wet bar. This space is perfect for entertaining and family functions. The bonus is the back room which is set up for a home theater. So if you’re looking to downsize from a larger home to something with no stairs yet a lower level that’s finished for when you need it, this is a great option for you. Come take a look and call me if you have any questions.

Tom Sommers | Edina Realty | 952.994.7294

7 things that hurt your home’s value when you go to sell.






7 things that hurt your home’s value when you go to sell.


Increase your chances of getting the most money for your home by avoiding these common mistakes.


Owning a home is a very personal thing because some these people feel that this is the one place that they can make their very own. This is very true but unfortunately in the world we live in you always have to consider how it will be perceived by potential buyers when you go to sell your home. As a real estate agent who sees more homes than I can count in a year, you would be surprised by some of the mistakes I see made by homeowners on a very consistent basis. I’d like to clue you in on the 10 things to avoid that can severely hurt the value of your home when you go to sell it.


Over improving your home for the neighborhood you live in- So you’ve always dreamed of having an outdoor kitchen? Is nothing wrong with putting one in but if you don’t see them in the price range in which your home is in there’s a very good chance it will never see the money back out of it. Its one thing to purchase the materials and do all the labor yourself, but it’s another thing to pay full contractor prices for an upgrade like this. There are many wonderful improvements to home that will not give you your value back. Another one would be an in-ground pool. If you decide to put in an in-ground pool know ahead of time that for every buyer that wants one another buyer will look at it as having no value. If your house is worth $250,000 and you put $100,000 worth of improvements into it, unless there are comparable sales to give you that extra hundred thousand dollars chances are that’s about how much you’re going to lose. This is where real estate agent can be very handy to discuss projects while you own your home. Calling up an agent and saying I’m thinking about adding this space or changing the kitchen can sometimes help to get that outsiders perspective.


Not fixing the small stuff -When you live in a home for a number of years it’s easy to start looking past minor problems and just live with them. You have to remember when it comes to selling a home; the buyers will notice those minor problems. These can include doors that don’t shut right windows with broken latches, broken grout in between the tiles on the floor, broken light fixtures or any other minor repair you can think of. It’s in your best interest to find a really good handyman that can come in and fix all of these items. Many of my clients can get these issues corrected and a half of the day. The money you spend to fix these minor things will far outweigh the cost of that handyman. When buyers are looking at homes they will at times nit-pick a home because there’s more than one that they like and it’s the only way they’re able to choose one over the other. Plus when you have the minor issues fixed and they don’t notice things that have a tendency not to look as hard. Do something that your competition is unwilling to do or has forgotten to do.


Be aware of items in your home that make it look dated- Buyers in all price ranges want to feel like they’re moving into a newer feeling home even when it has a classic look. Some of the simple things you can do in today’s market to make that happen without spending a lot of money is to change a few basic items that can make a big impact. For starters, if you have gold or brass handles, doorknobs, hinges or light fixtures removed them. Go with a brushed nickel or oil rubbed bronze. You can find products made out of these finishes in all price ranges. When you look at your fireplace does it have a gold vent cover? If it does go out and buy yourself a four dollar can of high heat spray paint and paint that grill a flat black. You will be amazed at what these small changes will make when a buyer sees your home for the first time.


Stay off the “what’s hot right now” bandwagon- If you’re considering doing upgrades in your home think about the longevity of that upgrade. Case in point off-white cabinets, trim work indoors have been in homes for hundreds of years. You still see that in new construction today. If you like this look changing cabinet and wood finishing is an upgrade. Just don’t get stuck like so many people from the 50s did with a trendy blonde wood or that chocolate brown wood from the late 70s. If you’re doing a backsplash in a kitchen think twice before you put a glass backsplash in over stone. I’m not saying that glasses bad I’m simply saying consider if it will be trendy and out in a couple of years? Think before you act consult with different people who work in the home improvement business. Many of them have a pretty good insight as to whether something is going to be trendy or not. You can never go wrong with natural stone and real wood. It’s the man-made materials that can be suspect.


Remodeling the entire house and doing all of the work yourself- Unless you’re a contractor and you know what you’re doing, higher out the bigger jobs. It’s very important that the home is consistent in quality on all levels. When you’re remodeling the kitchen, a bathroom or any other large project you have to get the job completely done. If you start to cut corners the quality of the work suffers and in the long run if you don’t know what you’re doing, it will cost you more money to have a professional come out and fix it. This goes back to fixing the minor issues. If you think the buyers won’t see these things and point them out you’re kidding yourself. Not to mention they have an inspector typically coming out who will certainly find the issues for the buyer.


Destroying the floor plan- I’m guessing your first thought is how do you destroy the floor plan? Easy you do silly things like take a three-bedroom house and remove one of the bedrooms by turning it into a walk-in closet. Or you take a three car garage extend your family room and turn it into a 1 1/2 car garage. These types of changes to the floor plan can really hurt the value of your home by taking away some of the most basic must haves for most buyers. Before you make these types of changes, take a moment and call your real estate agent to discuss the possible implications.


Filling every room of your home with furniture- When you’re selling your home, as you present it you want give the feeling that all of the rooms are open and spacious. One of the first things that destroy this feeling for buyers is when there’s too much furniture in the room. Staging can really help to correct a problem like this and is well worth the value that the service provides. Just because there’s a wall doesn’t mean it has to be filled with a bookshelf, desk or other piece of furniture. You want all of the entrances to every room including the bedrooms to feel open.

Foreclosures and Short Sales are no longer the best deals in Real Estate!






Foreclosures and Short Sales are no longer the best deals in Real Estate!

Sounds crazy?  Perhaps but consider a few things before you disagree with me on this idea. Foreclosures and short sales have been slowing down over the last year as the real estate market has been recovering. Many housing experts believe the majority of them are now behind us. As prices start to rise on traditional real estate the same can be said for foreclosure properties. When you take a look at the total amount of cash needed to fix many bank owned homes up, it is becoming more obvious you can move into a home with all of the updates for the same amount of money and not have to do any of the work.

Short Sales are becoming more and more complicated especially if the seller of a short sale has an FHA loan.  There seems to be no standard with FHA as to how the short sale approval is handled.  Meaning its a roll of the dice many times depending on who the asset manager is that is assigned to the file.  The last one I did require 21 different revisions to the HUD. Typically its 2 to 3.  One asset manager may approve the file and another asset manager who is looking at the exact same file will ask for a completely different set of revisions.  This is an internal issue with HUD and has nothing to do with the listing agent or the party that is negotiating the sale for the seller.

I am also seeing banks becoming less and less willing to make any repairs to the foreclosed properties.  This is making it harder to put the deals together, buyers are losing money and wasting market time. In addition some banks are pricing the foreclosures lower to try to get a multiple bids going.  they are hoping to end up with a better sale price than if they priced the home where it should be in the market.  This has added a lot of confusion and has made things harder.

I am not say rule foreclosures and shorts sales out, I am simply saying enter the market with your eyes wide open.  Look at traditional sales along side foreclosures and short sales to determine if one has better value than another.  I have really noticed a change in the Minneapolis and St. Paul market over the past year.

What is a Short Sale and How Does it Work?

In today’s market when so many people are looking for the best deal possible, “short sale” has become a bit of a buzzword.

Though the name might sound a little suspicious, short sales are actually a regular occurrence in the real estate world.  If you’re someone looking for a home, a short sale could bring you a great deal on a house.  If you’re a homeowner in over their head, a short sale could save you from foreclosure.

Today, we’re breaking down what exactly a short sale is.  At Real Time Home Search, we have extensive experience dealing with short sales.

Short Sale Definition

A short sale is when someone sells their home for less money than they owe on their mortgage.  Because of this, it is an action which the bank or lender must first approve.  Why would the lender allow a person to do this?

Because it’s potentially more beneficial for them than a foreclosure would be.

Why would a homeowner put their home up for short sale?  There are a number of reasons actually.

Why Home Owners Short Sell

Typically, a short sale requires some sort of financial hardship.  Often, it’s a situation where either they short sale or they foreclose.  Possible causes for short sales include but are not limited to:

- Need to liquidate debt

- Lapsed mortgage payments

- Your home’s worth is less than you owe

- You lack the means to afford your home any longer

The Advantages and Disadvantages of Short Sales

Many find a short sale to be preferable to a foreclosure.  Still, it’s not a perfect exit strategy.

On the down side, your credit will take a big hit.  Don’t expect to get any new loans or mortgages for a while.  Also, naturally, you’ll lose your home and you may have to keep making mortgage payments till your balance is made up.

The good news is a short sale doesn’t ruin your credit record in the same way a foreclosure does.  While a foreclosure will stick with your for seven years, you may overcome a short sale in just two!  Also you get the experience of actually selling your home rather than having it taken away from you.

If you’re out of options, a short sale might be the way to go.  If you’d like to know more or could use a bit of help, you can contact us here.

6244 Bryant Avenue S. in Richfield, MN 55423 | Richfield Home For Sale

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Welcome to 6244 Bryant Avenue S. in Richfield, MN 55423.  This incredible 1 1/2 story home has been completely remodeled over the last 5 years by the current owners.  They have kept the classic feel of a Richfield home and updated it so it feels like new construction. There is nothing left to update, this home has it all. The homes location is unique in that you have quick access to Crosstown and Lyndale Avenue.  This makes for a quick commute to Downtown Minneapolis.  Plus you are within walking distance of a park, lake, shopping and restaurants.  The home is on a dead end street so it’s quite with local traffic only.

The main level of the home has refinished hardwood floors in the main living room, hallway and formal dining room.  The living room has a huge picture window and wood burning fireplace with a brand new stone front. The main level office has tile floors and can be closed off from the formal dining room with French doors for privacy while working at home.  The sliding glass door from the office leads to the private fenced back yard. The kitchen has new appliances, new hardwood floor, granite counter-top, tin ceiling, glass back splash.  The kitchen has a breakfast area for quick meals on the go. The door off the kitchen leads to an incredible 3 season porch complete with vaulted ceilings and tongue in groove cedar.  The home has a total of three bedrooms and two bathrooms.  The main level has a full bathroom and two bedrooms, both are good size with spacious closets.  The main floor bathroom and a new tile floor, sink, vanity, faucet and tile surround in the tub/shower.

The upper level is one huge master suite complete with new hardwood floors, walk-in closets, storage closets, private bathroom and upgraded hardware.

Due to the addition the home has over 2200 finished square feet and the lower level has a lot of storage and room for expansion! Currently it has all new carpet, gas fireplace with stone front, game room, second office, laundry room with storage and work room. You will never run out of room in this house with all of its additional space.  The home owners have updated everything  and created a home that you can just move right into!

The home in addition to all of this has a new roof, new siding, two car attached garage, stamped concrete patio, maintenance free deck and huge fenced private back yard.

This amazing home is move-in ready for you.  The décor is neutral and tasteful. Take some time to watch the video and look at the photos, you will not be disappointed!

Home Owners Associations, what you should know before you buy a home!


Home Owners Associations, what you should know before you buy a home!

Understanding the role an association plays in the ownership of a town home or condominium is an important piece to consider before you actually purchase a home. Most of the information is pretty basic but very important none the less. The association will have an impact on you for the entire time you own the home.  Many of the documents are the same or very similar between a condominium and town homes. The biggest difference among all of them is the way the associations run and what rules they have in place.

In Minnesota you have a 10 day right of recession once you receive all of the association documents from the seller.  This is your time as a buyer to read though all of the information and have all of your questions or concerns addressed. Some of the key things buyers are looking for are the following-

1)      Are pets allowed?  If so is there a number and weight limit? Are there any breed restrictions?

2)      How many of the units are currently empty?  What is the foreclosure percentage?

3)      What is the financial health of the association?

4)      Does the association allow rentals?

5)      What is covered in the monthly association fee? Is hazard insurance included?

6)      Who is the management company?

The seller will give the buyer a package of information and it will contain these key documents-

1)      Resale disclosure statement- This form is an acknowledgement that you have as the buyer received all of the documents, you are aware of the association fee and agree to pay it monthly. Some are quarterly or yearly if it’s a limited association that deals mostly with shared amenities.

2)      All amendments and updates- These are all of the additions to the original documents. Everything from rule changes to supplemental updates.

3)      Articles of Incorporation- Document that gets filled at the secretary of state to create the non-profit organization that is the association.

4)      Bylaws of the Association- Rules that govern the association itself like home many members, how often do they meet etc…

5)      Rules and Regulations- The actual rules of the association for its members.  Examples would be are rentals permitted, can you have pets etc…

6)      Projected annual budget- Falls under the financials and will show you upcoming projects and repairs needed along with other expenses and all of the money they have in savings.

7)      Declaration of The association- The actual document that gets filled at the county recorder’s office that establishes the common interest community. Sometimes everything is included in this document. However in most cases you will get all of the above documents broken down into the sub chapters.

This is a list that can vary and all of these documents are not always included with each association.  As a rule, the best advice I can give you is to call the association once you have all of the documentation and double check that you do indeed have everything.  Sometimes the sellers believe they have all of it but find out there are sections missing.

Associations can be a wonderful thing; there is a lot of upside to them.  You have to protect yourself as a home buyer by making sure you have all of the documentation ahead of time. This will help you to avoid any last minute surprises or sign off on your rights without having seen everything.

Why is Buying a Home a Good Investment?

Are you currently renting your place of residence?

If so, you probably have a friend or family member who’s constantly urging you to stop renting and buy a home.  Typically they will point out that buying a home is an investment while renting is simply throwing money away.

Buying a home is indeed an investment, but is it a good one?  That’s the question we’ll be discussing today.

The Difference Between Buying and Renting

The differences between buying and renting are mostly obvious.  When you rent, you fill out the application, pay a deposit, and then you pay your monthly dues.  c

The advantages to renting are cheaper upfront costs, and a general lack of liability.  If something stops working, it’s typically the landlord’s job to fix it.

On the downside, you don’t have a lot of control over your space.  And depending where you live, rent rates can be high.  And that rent money is cash that you will never see again.

Buying, on the other hand, every payment you make means the house is one step closer to being yours and yours alone.  You’re also free to change and renovate the house as you see fit.  Not only does that make the house more appealing to your personal taste, but it can actually add value to the home itself.

In addition to adding value through renovation, homes automatically gain value through appreciation.

But Is Buying a Good Investment

When you buy a home, you’ll probably have to take out a mortgage.  This will come with interest rates that ultimately add additional cost to the home itself.  Homes also have property taxes and other fees.

Going out and buying the first home you like isn’t enough.  You have to do it right.

Appreciation is affected largely by the area the house is in and the state of the housing market itself.  To understand these factors, you need a realtor.  They know where the market is at, where it’s been, and where it’s going.

They will also prepare you for the upfront costs that come with buying a home.

With a knowledgeable realtor at your side, buying a home can be a great investment.  If you have any questions about the housing market, or you’re looking for a home right now, please visit our contact page.

We’d love to help you out.

Do you have any questions about investing in a home?  Have you ever owned property before?

582 Mission Hills Way W. Chanhassen, MN 55317 | Chanhassen Town Home For Sale









Welcome to 582 Mission Hills Way W., Chanhassen, MN 55317 this incredible townhome is available now and is move-in ready. This quiet townhome community is located close to highways 101 and 212, which makes this home a very easy commute from the Western suburbs. Chanhassen was just voted the number 4 Best Place to live in the country by Money magazine. The home was built in 1996 on a premier lot with a wooded backyard. This adds to the privacy of the home and there is no road noise. There’s a walking path directly behind the home with trails that extend around Lake Susan and the nature preserve. Your located very close to the Chanhassen dinner theater, University of Minnesota landscape Arboretum and all kinds of shopping.

The monthly association fee includes exterior maintenance, common ground maintenance including the landscaping. Snow and lawn care removal, sewer and water, professional management and hazard insurance. So the only additional cost to you as a homeowner would be for electricity, gas and a homeowners policy for your personal belongings also known as renters insurance. Most of those policies run about $150 a year.

The home itself has a very open floor plan and is larger than several of the other floor plans in this development. It has a large living room with a vaulted ceiling and fireplace, an eat-in kitchen with custom cabinets, center island / breakfast bar and plenty of room to cook. There’s an informal dining room off of the kitchen and a sliding glass door that leads to your private patio outback. The attached garage enters directly into the kitchen. There is a half bathroom as well as the laundry room and utility room on this level.

The upper level of the home features to bedrooms and a full bathroom. The master bedroom is 15 x 14 with an area for a small desk and a large walk-in closet with a closet organizer. The full bathroom is a pass through bathroom with a separate Jacuzzi tub and shower. All the flooring is in really nice condition and most of the rooms have been freshly painted. The sellers have upgraded many things including hardware, ceiling fans and lights.

This is a traditional sale so you do not have to worry about dealing with a bank or waiting for seven months to try to get approval on a short sale. All of the appliances stay with the home including the washer and dryer. If you are looking for a townhome for sale in Chanhassen, then you will definitely want to check out 582 Mission Hills Way W.

5 Common Home Buyer Mistakes That Can Cost You







5 Common Home Buyer Mistakes That Can Cost You

If you are reading this I am guessing you are interested in buying a home but don’t want to make any mistakes if you can avoid them.  Sorry to say you will make mistakes, that is how you learn. the thing you can do is avoid making the big mistakes that can cost you a home.  Many of these will seem like common sense to you but I assure you they must not be to a lot of the home buyers out there.  I see these mistakes being made all the time and I want to help you to avoid them. These apply weather you are buying a HUD home, foreclosure, short sale or traditional home.

1) Not getting pre-approved.

You can’t buy a home without a loan so you might as well start off right away by meeting with a lender to find out what you qualify for.  It is important that you know how much money you will need to purchase your new home.  Along with all of the fees, what your monthly payment will be, interest rate and all of the other details.  Just because you qualify for a specific dollar amount, it doesn’t meant you have to buy a home for that.  You may be comfortable with a lower priced home because the payment is better. The other part to this is now that the real estate market is creating multiple offer on properties, you don’t want to lose a home because you don’t have your financing in place.

2) Not choosing the right real estate agent for you.

You need an agent that will be your advocate.  One that will walk you through the process from beginning to end and help you to navigate the entire process.  Interview several agents, don’t just pick one that is standing in an open house.  Interview them to find the one who you feel will best represent your interests. In addition makes sure to ask the agent if they are currently licensed. I can’t believe I am adding that question but I met an agent the other day that had their license expire and were unaware of it. If the agent can’t even keep track of their license, how will they service you as a client.  Another thing, avoid  part time agents. You want only a full time professional helping you for obvious reasons.

3) Looking above your price range

This never ends well for buyers.  Once you have established your price range stick with it.  The days of coming onto a foreclosure and chopping off another 40% off the list price are over. You can’t compare homes that are in higher price ranges to what you are looking at.  They cost more for a reason and you have to understand value.  If you spend all of your time looking at homes that ultimately you can’t afford, you will miss some amazing opportunities in your price range.

4) Quitting your job

Do you really hate it that much?  If you do, then make the move to a new job before you apply for a loan. The loan qualifications are always changing so before you switch job ask the loan officer if it will affect your ability to buy a home.  It is always better to deal with this before you are locked in to a legally binding contract.  Just because you switch to a new job that pays more, there is no guarantee that is will make things better for you regarding your ability to get approved for a home loan.  Always check before you make any big changes in your financial status.

5) Don’t make any big purchases

Debt to income ratio is a key component in your loan approval process.  I have seen buyers go out an buy a brand new car or furniture and that can be enough to mess up that ratio.  Next thing you know, you no longer qualify for that home loan.  Ask questions before you buy things, it will save you a lot of hassle.

The lesson here is never assume anything and always ask your loan officer and real estate agent.  We are here to help you and if we don’t know the answer we will find out for you.  if it is a legal question you can always ask an attorney.  The point is that there is always someone willing to help you.

What Affects My Mortgage and Why?

Deciding to buy a home is a big commitment.

After all, homes require a certain amount of effort to maintain.  If something goes wrong or isn’t working correctly, you can’t simply call a landlord to fix it.  When you buy a home, it’s up to you to care for it, to protect it, and of course, to pay for it.

Home buying is a sizeable investment, typically more than a person can pay out of pocket.  That’s why we have mortgages.  But not all mortgages are created equal.

Mortgages are affected by a number of factors, both personal and market based.

What exactly are these factors?  Allow us to elaborate.

Factors that Affect Mortgages

1.  Inflation

When inflation happens, the value of money decreases.  What costs $10 today might cost $15 a few years from now.  Likewise, when you take out a mortgage, the amount of money given to you now will lose it’s value over time.

To compensate for this, lenders factor in inflation rates, increasing the rates to counter act value lost due to inflation.  Depending on the current economy, inflation rates can change from year to year.

2. Housing Market

Just like housing prices themselves, mortgages are affected by the market itself.  Are houses selling right now? Are a lot of new houses being built?  How many foreclosures are happening?

Due to the housing market collapse a few years ago, mortgage rates have seen some drastic fluxuations in recent times.  This just goes to show what kind of impact the housing market can have on your mortgage.

3. Your Income

Your personal income doesn’t just affect what rate your mortgage has, but what kinds of mortgages are available to you in the first place.  Obviously higher income yields better results, but in certain situations, low income can also provide unique opportunities.

If you would like to know more about the affects of your income and what mortgage options are available to you, please contact us here.  We would love to help you out.

4. Your Debt

Since a mortgage is a debt in itself, it makes sense that your other debts would have an impact on your mortgage.  Your debt can say a lot about you.  How responsible are you with payments? What do you place value in? How quick are you to go into debt?

The more responsible you’ve been with past debt, the better off you will be.

5. Credit Score

You knew it was coming.  The infamous credit score (or truth be told, three credit scores).  While your credit score definitely affects your mortgage, the credit score itself is affected by both your debt and your income.

If those to areas are in check, your credit score should be okay too.  For some people though, it’s not a case of having good credit or bad credit, but simply whether or not they have credit at all.

Make sure you have built up some actual credit before pursuing a mortgage.  You’ll probably have to get a credit car if you don’t have one.  Building credit shows that you can pay off and manage debt.

Credit shows accountability and responsibility.

And those are two factors that have a big impact on your mortgage.